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I got commissioned to make River Tam’s blue dress from Serenity. I can’t tell you how exciting this is and while it won’t be a replica I’m still going for a couple of identifiable components to the dress.

I tried draping the dress with a red organza I had but I scraped it and moved forward with a pattern instead.


My client wants a couple of additions to her version of the dress. It’s important that she feel awesome in this dress and so long as the color matches and the bottom hem is made carefully uneven, I think it’ll be recognized as River’s blue dress.

I’ve done a fitting with the slip that goes under the chiffon dress and it went great. All I got were measurements over email so I’d consider that a big win. Now I’m waiting for some chiffon to arrive to see if it’s the right color. It’s a decision you have to make and stick by. Do you go for making a dress that matches the color on screen, that photographs as the screen color or do you make it so people in person recognize the color as the color of the original dress? I’m going for the combo pack. It’s not a replica, as I said earlier, so I’m not incredibly concerned with an absolute perfect match. For more pics of the dress, check out this site.

I’ve also seen slightly brighter and slightly darker dresses on cosplayers and when you combine the boots and the hair and say, “Miranda” and go nuts, I don’t think a fan would argue with you.

While writing this, I’ve been distracted by watching Summer Glau, who plays River, learning and rehearsing the moves for the fight scene in the Maidenhead bar scene. Her moves are so incredibly graceful and I really love how important it was for Joss to have a realistic fight- one where things don’t always go River’s way.

A bit on sewing for others. I know not everyone enjoys it. I really do. Not always and not for all projects, and that’s why I like working for myself. I can always say no to a project.

The big question I get is how much I charge. I know what I could/should charge for this dress, as custom fit as it is already but I’m not charging what I should. When I think about who would pay my price, another conversation happens in my head.

Everyone has things that they will pay more for, be it organic produce, designer clothes, a particular type of car, trips to the salon. You name it. For whatever reason, we feel it’s important to pay a bit more for one thing but not on another- for instance, I buy cheap shampoo but I’ll pay more for toothpaste. Everyone has their own reasons and it’s no use trying to argue someone into thinking like you do. However, at some point, I’ll be ready to charge what I should and I don’t think that my clientele will be who it is today. Especially if I charge what I should for the little luxuries that handmade clothes can be. I know myself and I think that for those things I really want, that are out of my regular monthly budget, I save up for so that I can afford them. Perhaps other people do the same? Do you?

What do you save up for/pay more for and what things could you care less about?